As I was trying to buckle Joseph in his carseat on the parking lot at Aldi's, I had a small revelation. Paul had his on the road to Damascus... mine came on a slightly more mundane place. Though to be completely honest, I do not know how mundane the road to Damascus was for him at the time.
I was muttering about the acrobatics of a sixteen month old todler, too big for the buckles in the Aldi shopping cart, pondering about something I wanted to write and wondering why my road to sainthood could not be made by reading and writing beautiful things and singing Gods praises instead of wrestling with an adorable 16 month old who pooped his diaper out during naptime for the second time this week. That would make this whole 'becoming more Holy' thing a whole lot easier. I love my son, and quite frankly I love being a mom. But I am not always certain if I am that good at it.
I am pretty good at teaching. At reading things and explaining them to other people. Even sometimes at writing. I am good at it, and I love it. So why does God chose to refine me through dirty diapers and a mama climbing boy? Because I clearly feel that tending to Joseph has already helped weeding out sins like selfishness, procrastination (you can NOT procrastinate on a dirty diaper or a hungry child) and vanity. I wish I could say that these sins have been plucked right clean out of my heart, but like with weeds, it just doesn't work that way, and I will be weeding my hearts garden until the day I die.
I realised I was confusing two things. Reading, teaching, speaking in public might be my talents, my charisms. They are gifts from God. They come from him and I need to use them in His service. But that does not necessarily mean that they are the things I will need to use most in my quest to become more like Him. They are not the muscles that need the most training.
If you look in the bible, God often calls people to do exactly what they do not seem to be very good at. Moses as a public speaker? David as a Giant slayer and a king? That does not mean they do not use their particular talents in his service, but what he asks of them to give to Him, is not just the best part of themselves. In giving over the smaller parts, the things that maybe are not their greatest talent or fondest occupation, they give themselves more completely. Maybe our talents will be what will be noticed most by others in His service, maybe they will even accomplish the most in His plan for others, but what matters most are the things that refine us unto His will. What refines me most is not just the use of the 'best parts' of me, but exactly the use of those parts of me that need a whole lot of work.